15 May 2016

A Shorten Labor Government will unite with the Victorian and South Australian Governments to deliver new jobs in the regions worst affected by motor vehicle production closures.

Labor will commit $59 million to the Manufacturing Transition Boost jobs package to ensure regions across the nation - including Geelong and Northern Adelaide - continue to have strong workforces and local jobs.

These regions face the prospect of high unemployment and social dislocation after the Liberals goaded the car industry into closing down and leaving Australia.

This jobs package will provide pathways to new jobs for skilled workers by attracting new business investment in advanced manufacturing. Firms will be given new incentives to diversify into new products and markets and employ automotive workers who have lost their jobs.

This package is critical not just for the automotive industry and jobs – it's critical for Australia’s economy.

Automotive vehicle production is supported by a supply chain of around 160 businesses, involved in component manufacturing, engineering, design and tooling.

It's estimated that for every one automotive job, 6.5 jobs are generated in associated supply. Modelling suggests that 200,000 people will lose their jobs as a result of closures in motor vehicle production between now and 2017.

The shutdowns will rip $29 billion from the economy – about two per cent of GDP.

Under the Manufacturing Transition Boost jobs package, funding of $10.5 million will help existing automotive businesses develop and implement plans to plug into new supply chains, bring new products to market and improve productivity. This will benefit firms across the nation including in Victoria and South Australia where the automotive industry is concentrated as well as the 16,000 automotive manufacturing jobs in NSW and Queensland. 

In addition, $48.1 million will be provided to stimulate investment in new opportunities in advanced manufacturing.

Rather than duplicate programs at the State and Federal level, Labor will leverage the work already done by State Governments and supplement existing state programs, both by increasing the resources these programs can draw on and by expanding their scope.

In Victoria, Labor’s Manufacturing Transition Boost will expand the Victorian Government’s successful Local Industry Fund for Transition (LIFT) program.  With location targeted assistance in North Melbourne, South East Melbourne, West Melbourne and Geelong, this boost will back Victorian workers as they transition to new jobs.

In South Australia, Labor will expand the existing South Australian Government Automotive Supplier Diversification Program (ASDP) through a $15 million investment to expand the program to non-automotive manufacturing businesses in South Australia.

Australians, and Labor, understand the importance of this industry, even if the Turnbull Liberal Government does not.

The Liberals have done nothing but drive advanced manufacturing jobs offshore and have abandoned Australia’s automotive industry.

For the last three years, the only jobs they've been worried about have been their own. 

While Mr Turnbull waffles about the importance of manufacturing and a diverse economy, over 50,000 manufacturing jobs have been lost under the Liberals since 2013

Malcolm Turnbull and Christopher Pyne have sat in the Cabinet room and signed up to billions of dollars of short-sighted cuts that undermined Australia’s ability to be an innovation nation.

In contrast, Labor will fight to keep high-skilled, high-wage jobs in Australia, and is committed to supporting manufacturing workers and their families in the transition to the future economy.

For more information about Labor’s Manufacturing Transition Boost jobs package, please visit

MONDAY, 16 MAY 2016